pike going off the feed as the weather gets too cold

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pike going off the feed as the weather gets too cold

Post  robh107 on Mon Dec 01, 2008 12:38 am

i know this may be a strange concept, hell i'm still trying to wrap my head around the concept but after yesterdays deadbait session and discussing with other anglers and the park keeper on the venue it seems like the pike in this particular venue always go almost completely off the feed as the weather gets frosty, whereas the rest of the year i have never blanked on it.
this has happened with the same things being said on the bank 2 seasons in a row now (i have fished the venue for 3 seasons but only started fishing it after the new year of the first season) and it just seems a very odd scenario.
has anyone else had this sort of experience with a venue??
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Re: pike going off the feed as the weather gets too cold

Post  noodle on Mon Dec 01, 2008 5:13 am

not going off just going slower check the water temp and take more note of that rather than the frost pike are cold blooded so as its gets colder they do slow down

less affected waters tend to be ones where they are deep enough to allow 'turnover' to occur or shallow waters that have lots of movement as if the fish have to move they have to eat regardless of the water temp
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Re: pike going off the feed as the weather gets too cold

Post  wolfie on Mon Dec 01, 2008 10:21 am

i once read an article many moons ago by nev fickling about feeding pike and he claimed as only nev can claim that for a 20lb pike to maintain its own weight he ate 4ozs of bait for 260 odd days a year leaving 100odd days when they were not feeding but also in the concideration was that the bulk of the food eaten was to be around spawning time and into late spring this redused the actual feeding days also reducing the feeding days was the fact that they did not always take 4 oz fish every time it eats for example if a 20 was to eat a 4lb jack then this would equate to 16 feeding days just to maintain its weight

the way i look at things these days is im not bothered with moon phases (altho i know they do work ) im not bothered with weather conditions (altho i know that certain conditions will give me better chances of fish )

its just a simple matter of if a bait is in the water its better than a ton of bait in the freezer
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pike going off the feed

Post  robh107 on Mon Dec 01, 2008 4:35 pm

thanks for the replies guys.... i'm aware of how a pike behaves in relation to its blood temp/surrounding water temp, and i fish a few venues around the area which are very similar.... thing is this is the only venue where you may as well be fishing an empty pond once the weather gets seriously cold.
i guess the pike in this particular water react more than the others for some reason
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Re: pike going off the feed as the weather gets too cold

Post  Andy Macfarlane on Mon Dec 01, 2008 6:27 pm

I think most fish slow down a little in Winter, even the proper Arctic species like Powan, Char and Ferox etc. I think pike are no different. I guess being as specialised as they are, they'd rather not expend energy unless it's absolutely essential. I've caught pike in Winter that had mud-stains halfway up their flanks and leeches all over their bodies, which would suggest they were literally burying themselves in the mud at 35 feet.
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Re: pike going off the feed as the weather gets too cold

Post  robh107 on Mon Dec 01, 2008 7:07 pm

i agree about fish metabolism... thats an obvious fact which is relevant, i've just never known pike to go off the feed in a venue to the extent that these residents do.... i'm not kidding when i say you may aswell be fishing an empty lake, its as if the fish arent even there, i just wondered if there was another possible explanation that i'd overlooked
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Re: pike going off the feed as the weather gets too cold

Post  Bazz on Mon Dec 01, 2008 7:31 pm

They always go off the feed when I'm fishing lol!
More likely I'm fishing the wrong Bait or place Rolling Eyes

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lmao bazz

Post  robh107 on Mon Dec 01, 2008 7:46 pm

Bazz wrote:They always go off the feed when I'm fishing lol!

More likely I'm fishing the wrong Bait or place Rolling Eyes

lol mate.... NOBODY gets runs in this place at this time of year, no matter what baits or methods or places they try
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Re: pike going off the feed as the weather gets too cold

Post  JOEL on Mon Dec 01, 2008 9:53 pm

if deads are failing,try lures.i know it's very slow in winter but i've had bonus fish when nowt on deads is happening.a big gaudy replicant or bull dawg fished slowly is my fav.
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Re: pike going off the feed as the weather gets too cold

Post  Jeffb on Wed Dec 03, 2008 11:52 am

From what I have read and learnt over the years Pike do lay low at times of sudden temperature change, but when the temperature stabilizes they soon come on the feed again...

Of course, like all fish they do slow down during winter, but will feed consistently, albeit not as avidly as in warmer months...

I always check the weather for a full 5 days before a session and if the temp' is due to drop a lot in the 48 hours before a session then I'll postpone until it stabilizes...

Pike will feed, even in minus temp's, as long as the temp' has been stable for at least a week prior to your session...
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Re: pike going off the feed as the weather gets too cold

Post  Andy Macfarlane on Wed Dec 03, 2008 4:45 pm

I think that's pretty sound advice there. Mostly any fish will adapt to conditions as long as they've had a period of stability to adjust. It's erratic weather I also find puts fish of the feed.
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Re: pike going off the feed as the weather gets too cold

Post  Chris Betts on Sun Dec 07, 2008 8:01 am

I think the weather we have had recently is probably accounting for the poor results being seen around the country. As has been stated sudden weather changes affect fish behavior, and we have had a couple of cold snaps mixed around mild weather.

I fished yesterday and the water I was fishing was freezing up as the day went. This is something I haven't seen in my neck of the woods for a few years prior to Christmas, if at all. The fish were still on the feed though I managed a low double and lost another fish. I suspect we have to look closely at our approach in difficult conditions. I was fishing float legers on the rod I had both takes on. On both occasions the float showed movement for some time before a hittable run occurred. The fish I landed was hooked on one treble right on the edge of the mouth; obviously this fish was feeding carefully. I suspect the lost fish was very lightly hooked, hence the hook pull.

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lol

Post  robh107 on Sun Dec 07, 2008 12:53 pm

yeah chris... thats happened to me too on THE ONLY run i've managed in 6 sessions of fishing this venue at this time of year.... i sat watching the tip twitch for ages ( i was fishing a dead on running ledger) before something substantial occurred.... and even then i managed to lose the fish after a somewhat lethargic 2 min scrap, its very rare i lose a fish due to poor hooking so i was surprised.
i dont know... i'm probably making a mountain out of a molehill with this post about their winter feeding but they do seem alot more affected than fish in other venues i visit at this time of year
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Re: pike going off the feed as the weather gets too cold

Post  Jeffb on Tue Dec 09, 2008 6:56 pm

I think you're right to raise this point as it proves that it can be a case of venue rather than species...

River pike are hard to catch in times of flood after heavy rain, whereas lake pike will not be so heavily effected and can be caught...

Erratic temperatures will put pike down, and I can't help but mention the effects of air pressure, although I have no knowledge of it, I know a lot of people bang on about that being a huge factor... Anyone know much about it..?
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Re: pike going off the feed as the weather gets too cold

Post  robh107 on Wed Dec 10, 2008 7:42 pm

thats precisely the point i'm making jeff.... i know about the pike, as all species do, slowing down when the weather gets cold, my point is the question: why in this particular venue do they all but vanish when other venues are not so badly affected? i've got about 15 years experience fishing for these predators at various locations and in virtually all weathers and i have never known anything like this place.
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Re: pike going off the feed as the weather gets too cold

Post  Jeffb on Thu Dec 11, 2008 9:08 pm

Thinking more about this I find it uncanny how some waters fish well in most conditions, while some venues I know go dead with the slightest bit of weather variation...

As an example, from the amount of times I fished it over the years for Pike, I can pretty much say that the River Lea is not worth fishing in high coloured conditions anywhere, even on the quiet back waters... Whereas, on a lake a fish, which has a relief channel running into it via a slues-gate, I can go there in any weather and usually grab a fish or two...

The fact is, in good conditions I can get plenty of Pike on the River, so can only conclude, from years of experience, that the pike there will always be off the feed at times of heavy rain and high water, simple as that, house on it, and all that...
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Re: pike going off the feed as the weather gets too cold

Post  nickcarpy on Thu Dec 11, 2008 9:24 pm

mate we did a fish in todsy,conditions finebut..............loads of differant bait.........loads of differant tactics...............
but with it been cod an they slowed down, my veiw is they might av fed yesday or days before but as they av slowed down there hunger as an they dont need to feed or pace there selve?example, a camel might gorge itself not knowning when next feed/drink might be.it might a day or aweek plus?its a fine line when you hit them on feed but when you do good luck Smile also my veiw fish shoal up an then pike see it as a feast?
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Re: pike going off the feed as the weather gets too cold

Post  Jeffb on Fri Dec 12, 2008 2:45 pm

In many ways I agree, but in winter I'm not so sure about the Pike viewing a big shoal of fish as a potential feast, as they will not want to be chasing all those lively fish about, but will more be on the look out for the dead, injured or weak fish among them... Sure they'll always be in touch with the shoals, as they will throughout the year other than spawning time, but they won't be feeding hard...

I always like to drop a live or dead-bait in where I know shoal fish are held up for that reason...
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Re: pike going off the feed as the weather gets too cold

Post  Andy Macfarlane on Fri Dec 12, 2008 4:40 pm

I've never bought into the theory that locating the preyfish will help you locate the Pike. Preyfish might help you find prolific numbers of jacks, with the the odd decent fish but I rarely, if ever, find the better Pike anywhere near the preyfish haunts.
Pike don't eat that much. A Pike can maintain it's weight on 3 times it's bodyweight of food a year. To increase in size, they may only have to eat 5 times their bodyweight in food a year. That really isn't a lot so think about it.
Why would Pike expend energy following shoals of fish around that they have absolutely no intention of eating?
The best Pike spots I know of have almost no preyfish in residence and I also know of preyfish spots with almost no Pike in residence. That suggests to me that Pike don't 'hang around' near the preyfish at all.
Think about this too. If you were a Perch and Pike were constantly hanging around your chosen swims, you'd find different swims to live in but you can almost always find preyfish in the same areas, throughout the year.
Now I'm not suggesting that Pike never visit well-known preyfish marks. They do but I think they only come around as often as hunger dictates and if what we know of Pike diet is true, that won't be very often.
If you want to locate Pike, use Bathymetric Charts, local info, use your own eyes, search for them with lures or other efficient search-tools, like wobbling outfits. Use anything that might put you in the right spot, even bribery....lol but don't rely on preyfish shoals. They can very often draw you away from the Piking 'Hotspots'
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